I think it is pretty clear that I heart our crock pot. It’s Theresa’s mother’s old crock pot from the 70’s. It has some old school homey flair:
It doesn’t have its original lid, and it’s decorated with a green color and food images that are terribly dated, though strangely enough, this style has become more popular in recent years. Either way, it has a lot of charisma. It is like that good old friend that you know will always be there to stand by you, support you, and if need be, feed you. I have obviously developed a strong bond with the crock-pot this winter. I tend to have some time in the morning, and not a lot of time midday or in the evenings, so being able to set something up to cook for a long time and be done by dinner is just great. Add the fact that winter is the time that stew every day sounds like a good idea, and well, the crock-pot emerges as my personal hero. Here is another meal that utilizes some crock-potting.
The Turkey-Apple-Bean Stew was very simple. We had some leftover turkey from Sunday’s dinner that I chopped up and put into the crock pot. In went 1/8th finely chopped celeriac, 1 chopped carrot, 1 chopped onion, 2 tbsp of our apple cider syrup, a little bouillon, and 1/2 cup of precooked Vermont Cranberry Beans. I let this all cook together all day on low. I roasted sweet potatoes in their skins and served them as a major carbohydrate for the meal. Simple, and very tasty. The turkey and beans lent themselves well to the sweet flavors of apple cider, carrot and sweet potato.
The salad utilized only items from our Red Fire Farm Deep Winter CSA.
I thought the tamarind-lime bottle from Appalachian Naturals that I got from the Red Fire Farm CSA was salad dressing. It was marinade. This became a bit of a confusing point when I had been planning to make a simple green salad. The marinade was good, and could work for a salad, but needed something else to make a cohesive dish. Ah, cilantro, it tied it all together very nicely.
Carrot, Radish, Cilantro Salad (serves 2-4):
- 3 cups of spinach (you can mix in other salad greens), washed and ripped
- 1 carrot, chopped finely
- 2 watermelon radishes, chopped finely
- 1/2 bunch of cilantro, chopped
- 4 tbsp of tamarind-lime marinade
Combine all ingredients and serve.
Now normally I just chop things by hand, but you know I wanted these to be finely chopped and thought, ‘hey, we have a mandoline languishing in a drawer, why don’t I use that?’ Bad idea.
The ease of using a mandoline is just not apparent to me. Not only do I barely manage not to kill myself just putting it together, but it is a really difficult process to get it to slice my hardy produce without, yet again, maiming myself.
I vowed to never again succumb to the mandoline. Although I did finagle finely chopped carrot and radish from it, I think I will pass for a trusty knife next time.
Anyone in desperate need or wanting of a mandoline/v-slicer? I have just the device for you. 🙂 Happy Wednesday!